• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies living kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education experiences global resources the cider press projects digital market permies.com all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Nicole Alderman
  • raven ranson
  • paul wheaton
  • Jocelyn Campbell
  • Julia Winter
stewards:
  • Burra Maluca
  • Devaka Cooray
  • Bill Erickson
garden masters:
  • Joylynn Hardesty
  • Bryant RedHawk
  • Mike Jay
gardeners:
  • Joseph Lofthouse
  • Dan Boone
  • Daron Williams

How to make a BBR firebox frame out of an old wood stove  RSS feed

 
Posts: 210
21
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
How to make a BBR rocket masonry heater firebox frame out of an old wood stove

Today I started modifying a Vogelzang Frontiersman wood stove I found on Craigslist for $45. I simply used a Harbor Freight 7” angle grinder ($45 with coupon) and Metabo cutting disks to modify it.

First I removed all the firebricks lining the wood stove and cut out the top, then the angle iron on the insides of the left, right and rear wood stove walls that previously held the firebricks in place.

I’m left with an empty 21” wide x 17.5” deep by 15” tall rectangular steel box that I can use to hold my 6” or 8” rocket core. (I’ll add a photo from a recent 8” masonry rocket heater build that utilized one of these wood stoves, but the core was in a traditional front to rear, left sidewinder orientation. I had to add door glass to the firebox door.)

This took less than an hour of light work yesterday afternoon. In this build, I’m going to use a 6” BBR core oriented from left to right, with the firebox door being part of the right hand wall of the firebox. Port will be in the ceiling of the firebox on the far right, with a double shoebox riser directly above the firebox.

A 24”x24”x14” deep square 14g steel box will sit directly over the wood stove with double shoe box firebox and riser, and that will sit between 2 masonry benches on my family room fireplace hearth.

But I just wanted to show how easy and cheap it can be to use old plate steel wood stoves like the Frontiersman to solve the issue of how to “build and mount” a firebox door with glass window.

I’m using one of my 6” shippable cores (with minor modifications) to build this firebox and double shoebox riser configuration, and I’ll add pictures as that takes shape. The primary air holes already in the firebox door will be modified for primary air. The holes under the door in the wood stove frame will be modified and used to introduce the secondary air through the recess in the 1” ceramic fiber board under the firebrick split floor of the firebox. (The two current air holes currently seen in the rear wall of the wood stove will be sealed off by the left side wall of the firebox.)
C9B05FB4-BAC1-4B7F-9BF3-474FBC806E52.jpeg
[Thumbnail for C9B05FB4-BAC1-4B7F-9BF3-474FBC806E52.jpeg]
7445F0F7-144D-4748-A051-F0882456369E.jpeg
[Thumbnail for 7445F0F7-144D-4748-A051-F0882456369E.jpeg]
7E79F0BA-A615-48D1-B133-CC06F2AF4395.jpeg
[Thumbnail for 7E79F0BA-A615-48D1-B133-CC06F2AF4395.jpeg]
0935923E-0B74-4421-A963-AD76F9E48042.jpeg
[Thumbnail for 0935923E-0B74-4421-A963-AD76F9E48042.jpeg]
31F78607-F662-46B9-8F82-2259AC433FC0.jpeg
[Thumbnail for 31F78607-F662-46B9-8F82-2259AC433FC0.jpeg]
BE69A10C-3460-4DA0-8A11-C831BB283405.jpeg
[Thumbnail for BE69A10C-3460-4DA0-8A11-C831BB283405.jpeg]
425E94C2-A9C6-40C9-B934-36C19E70E46F.jpeg
[Thumbnail for 425E94C2-A9C6-40C9-B934-36C19E70E46F.jpeg]
BBC5F432-0731-424F-B953-4C7CD357D93A.jpeg
[Thumbnail for BBC5F432-0731-424F-B953-4C7CD357D93A.jpeg]
E9E32EB8-7394-4128-B239-A559752FAE05.jpeg
[Thumbnail for E9E32EB8-7394-4128-B239-A559752FAE05.jpeg]
9C3117A5-0126-4E99-95D8-32D70B4FBB2B.jpeg
[Thumbnail for 9C3117A5-0126-4E99-95D8-32D70B4FBB2B.jpeg]
 
Brian James
Posts: 210
21
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Just to be clear, you can’t use just any old wood stove for these purposes. It needs to be a lighter gauge plate steel body (not cast iron) for ease of modification while maintaining structural integrity, and the size and shape of both the firebox and door have to both be easily modified and incorporated into the rocket heater build. Plus if it was mass produced for a long time at an inexpensive price point when new, it’s often cheaper on the used market. Doors with glass are a bonus; double doors or doors that are too wide or tall or have an odd mechanism for closing or latching should be avoided.

Frankly, I’ve searched literally thousands of Craigslist ads from several states here in northeastern USA, and the only unit I’ve found so far that meets all these criteria is the Vogelzang Frontiersman. I suspect that an Englander NC13 ( maybe the NC30) would also work, but I haven’t seen one in person yet. I’m sure there are others but I haven’t found them yet.

So far I’ve found three of these particular stoves on Craigslist. I picked up the first two for $45 each, and the third for $150 last week. But it came with 10’ of class A stainless steel chimney including a complete through the roof assembly, and I sold that tonight on Craigslist for $125. So for a net investment of $115 I’ve gotten 3 full wood stoves to modify - $38 each.
 
Brian James
Posts: 210
21
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Next: Finish the firebox, the double shoe box riser (DSR), build the benches using reclaimed old 18”x9”x4.5” firebrick and 2’x2’ cement sidewalk pavers, figure out how to integrate this Conservo Toledo Cooker as a white oven, cap the rocket primary bell with a 14g square 24”x24”x 14” sheet metal box maintaining enough breathing space between the DSR and the cap, and apply a blast gate as a bypass damper on the bottom rear of the 24”x24” metal box cap...


 
pollinator
Posts: 84
5
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Over here in the UK I've used the modified body and door of a Charnwood Country 4 stove in my 5" BB Mass heater. I had to cut the back off it and add a 'new' section to get the recommended firebox depth (as per Peters specs).
It works very well.
 
Brian James
Posts: 210
21
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
The firebox is now complete, along with the Double Shoebox Riser (DSR) on top, and the secondary air tube and flange are now mounted. The holes in the wood stove frame under the door were widened to provide increased secondary air area.
14FEF014-99F6-492A-875F-611727EDDCAA.jpeg
[Thumbnail for 14FEF014-99F6-492A-875F-611727EDDCAA.jpeg]
BFB9F331-4865-4042-90CD-67553393C37D.jpeg
[Thumbnail for BFB9F331-4865-4042-90CD-67553393C37D.jpeg]
8F3FA552-5292-4872-8F62-2D45DB33E4B6.jpeg
[Thumbnail for 8F3FA552-5292-4872-8F62-2D45DB33E4B6.jpeg]
CF0F212A-52B2-44C3-BDDB-CF9AB808C0D0.jpeg
[Thumbnail for CF0F212A-52B2-44C3-BDDB-CF9AB808C0D0.jpeg]
58F31231-1822-42BF-877A-0BD79F05FF3D.jpeg
[Thumbnail for 58F31231-1822-42BF-877A-0BD79F05FF3D.jpeg]
6516E924-DE63-4EB7-8B4F-AD660A570FF3.jpeg
[Thumbnail for 6516E924-DE63-4EB7-8B4F-AD660A570FF3.jpeg]
78755DD6-373D-4BE4-A020-D032F3CD2663.jpeg
[Thumbnail for 78755DD6-373D-4BE4-A020-D032F3CD2663.jpeg]
0CE1D686-4A6D-41CA-845D-EFD05A9FD606.jpeg
[Thumbnail for 0CE1D686-4A6D-41CA-845D-EFD05A9FD606.jpeg]
 
Brian James
Posts: 210
21
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I have a 14 gauge sheet metal square box that’s 24”x24”x14” tall that’s going to sit above this. It has a 6” round flue collar on the bottom rear of the box that I’m going to use as a bypass with a blast gate. Since the wood stove is only 17” deep, there will be a 7”x24” space at the rear for the exhaust to pass into two blind masonry benches. One of those benches will contain this Conservo Toledo Cooker as a white oven. The whole assembly will sit on a 10” hearth in front of a fireplace so a chimney won’t be very difficult.
09B63D15-34E2-42B3-8E46-52DA6217426A.jpeg
[Thumbnail for 09B63D15-34E2-42B3-8E46-52DA6217426A.jpeg]
69059312-602F-4CB4-B364-A08AFA8C621D.jpeg
[Thumbnail for 69059312-602F-4CB4-B364-A08AFA8C621D.jpeg]
C087F501-3D96-46B8-A105-F9A192142C94.jpeg
[Thumbnail for C087F501-3D96-46B8-A105-F9A192142C94.jpeg]
 
Brian James
Posts: 210
21
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
The “shippable core” from this build, all boxed up and ready to “ship” - from my garage to my basement, where I’ll reassemble everything. (At least the basement has heat!)
52A8C6DC-9700-4CBD-AC40-625B79616514.jpeg
[Thumbnail for 52A8C6DC-9700-4CBD-AC40-625B79616514.jpeg]
 
Brian James
Posts: 210
21
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Test fit, temporary while I make measurements for the masonry benches. Hearth is 96” wide, and now 27” deep since I extended it. The wood stove is 24” wide, 17” tall. The square metal box on top of it is 24”x24”x14” tall. Benches will be blind ended and 24”x24”, with 2’ bench to the right of the rocket and 4’ to the left. The metal box on top will have a 4”x6” mica glass viewport into the DSR above the firebox, with a view into the area above the port.
E785E9A2-4D76-4CAF-8F34-63956993FB18.jpeg
[Thumbnail for E785E9A2-4D76-4CAF-8F34-63956993FB18.jpeg]
 
Posts: 36
3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Bravo!! I love it when recycled items fit so well in a project.

Have you noticed any sagging issues with the fiber board on top of the burn box? The reason I am asking is because I am building my burn chamber and riser above my batch box and want to cover the top of my fire bricks in the box with fiber board like you have.

I noticed some fiber board has clay added to help prevent sagging. What grade fiber board are you using?
 
Brian James
Posts: 210
21
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I have not noted any sagging. I’m using 1” 2300 LD (low density) ceramic fiber board for the roof of the firebox.
 
Get me the mayor's office! I need to tell him about this tiny ad:
Would you replace your oven with a rocket oven?
https://permies.com/t/90099/replace-oven-rocket-oven
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!